Livestock slurries are one of the most widely available and underutilised resources in Ireland

Project Insights

  • €427,884

    Total Project Costs
  • 2 yr

    Project Duration
  • 2018

    Year Funded

Project Description

Livestock slurries are one of the most widely available and underutilised resources in Ireland. Current farming practice disposes of raw slurries via land spread, which precludes energy recovery and incurs a significant transport energy penalty. It results in sub-optimal nutrient recycling, giving rise to nutrient losses from fugitive atmospheric emissions and runoff to surface and groundwater. Farming sector fragmentation is a barrier to optimal deployment of energy-related capital infrastructure, which can be overcome via a low-cost system to aggregate slurry solids for transport to centralised energy/nutrient recovery facilities. SLURRES PILOT will demonstrate a pyrolysis-based slurry-to-bioenergy system. It will advance current technology by (a) engineering a novel mechanical filtration process to de-water slurry solids, deploying technology that decouples filtration pressure from material movement and introducing a biomass filtration aid shown to separate slurry solids from liquors at efficiencies that justify transport for energy recovery. It will (b) demonstrate energy recovery via pyrolysis including investigation into optimal syngas storage conditions to improve dispatchability, enabling alignment of energy supply with demand. It will (c) investigate processes to improve nutrient recycling including N recovery from slurry liquor filtrates and water vapour sourced from solids drying, as well as P recovered from biochar and/or ash. Results will inform designs of pilot-scale units that can be engineered to improve the integrated manure-to-energy system. Techno-economic validation will support development of a business model that sources feedstock either from permanent separation-unit deployments in large installations such as piggeries or from mobile applications that service small-scale cattle farms.

Project Details

Total Project Cost: €427,884

Funding Agency: SEAI

Year Funded: 2018

Lead Organisation: University of Limerick

Partner Organisation(s): Irish Research Centre for Resource Efficiency (Tcbb RESOURCE); Premier Green

JJ Leahy

Lead Researcher